This section provides the visitor with the content and background for the subjects in the petroglyphs, such as humans, animals, and plants. It also provides interpretations of complex scenes that incorporate many figures that together convey an event. The scenes mostly depict activities relating to hunting and warfare. In this section, the visitor will learn about the people who created the rock art of Saudi Arabia and their environment.
The cheetah is a large cat with spots and a long tail. The head is distinctive in that it is quite domed, short, and thick. Adapted to high-speed chases on the ground, rather than climbing, the cheetah has long, slender legs and non-retractable claws and digital pads not conducive to gripping. As such, they are portrayed in the rock art standing on all fours, like a dog, rather than [...]
The ibex is similar to the wild goat in terms of the shape of its head, body, and tail. Like the goat, it has scimitar horns that curve backward in a large semi-circle, but with the addition of a series of regularly spaced transverse ridges along the outer edge of the curve. Ancient artists depicted these ridges distinctly on the more realistic panels, however, where a caprine [...]
The hyena has a dog-like body with strong forequarters and a back that slopes down in the rear. The neck is long and powerful and the muzzle is blunt, with powerful dentition for crushing bones. This species has a pale gray or beige body with black stripes on its sides and a black and white tail. The body hair is long and shaggy, with a crest from head to tail that stands erect [...]
The dogs illustrated in the Neolithic hunting scenes at Jubbah and Shuwaymis appear to be medium-sized, with erect ears and a curly tail. They do not have a slender build or long legs like a saluki or other sighthounds, but rather have average length legs and a strong, but not massive body.